Today, make a list of your professional communication soft skills. If you Google “soft skills”, you arrive at 5-7 skill sets for which communication is deemed of utmost importance. These skills include: leadership, communication, ethics, flexibility, problem-solving, teamwork and interpersonal skills.
What additional skills would you add to this list, based on your professional experiences?
From my own perspective and experience, the common denominator which connects these professional soft skills is communication. In one way, or another, your words, actions and beliefs are broadcast loud and clear to everyone around you.
Regardless of whether people are physically or virtually connected to you. Or, whether you think you are not the primary person communicating. Because you are continuously communicating: consciously or unconsciously.
The quality of your professional communication soft skills reflect how you think about, interpret, report and act on what you observe.
First, how you think about issues, problems, challenges and innovation reflects your information resources.
Where do you get your information? Are your information resources reliable and easily validated? Do information resources reflect a singular point-of-view or multiple perspectives and approaches?
As a result, intentionally or unintentionally biased information resources bias your professional communication soft skills. On the other hand, when you move one millimeter beyond what is comfortable, you challenge colleagues and clients to do the same: together.
Then, when you leverage your professional communication soft skills, do you depend exclusively on one communication platform?
Perhaps you are more comfortable making a traditional, verbal presentation in a lecture-type setting. First, to whom do you present? Next, where are participants located: in the same room, virtually and live-streamed, via downloads on blogs and podcasts? Also, do you offer a transcription to participants? Then, does that transcription read like a lecture? Alternatively, do you modify content to challenge and engage readers?
Finally, are you able to adapt insights into smaller, consumable bites for posting on social media sites? Each format style shifts how you translate your talk into your word into your message into your story. Which platform(s) is/are most comfortable? Least comfortable? Why?
Also, professional communication soft skills are physical, even when no one can see you.
When colleagues and clients and followers read and hear what you have to say, they create a mental picture of who you are. This picture includes their expectations of your physical actions, formed by the intensity and urgency of your messaging, word choices and signature phrases. Even if this is not your intent, you do create a persona inside colleagues’ and client’s brains.
If all you think you do is communicate via presentations, blogging and/or article writing, then you have a perceptual gap about yourself. Because professional communication soft skills create employee and customer experiences: about you and your unique mindset.
Time to bridge the gaps in your professional communication soft skills? Then take the next steps, Today.
Planning your next team, corporate or association meeting? Searching for a one-on-one catalyst to get you unstuck? Engage me to present a One Millimeter Mindset ™ program! Delivered virtually or in-person. Contact me here.
Babette Ten Haken | Change Catalyst | Purpose-Driven Professional Innovation | Cross-Functional Team Leadership | Trust-Based Client Retention | In Person & Virtual Speaker, Consultant, Coach, Author |
Babette Ten Haken, Founder & President of One Millimeter Mindset™ Speaking & Consulting, catalyzes trust-based, purpose-driven, cross-functional leadership. She leverages Voice of the Customer and storytelling to translate across communication and collaboration disconnects impacting successful business outcomes across people and professional disciplines. Babette is a cross-functional business-oriented STEM professional, qualitative Voice of the Customer facilitator, and Six Sigma Green Belt (Quality). She is a member of the ASQ, SHRM, PMI, the National Speakers Association. Her playbook of cross-functional collaboration, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon.com. Contact Babette here. Image source: Adobe Stock.